The Gospel: Intimacy, love, and respect

My wife and I have been blessed by doing the love and respect book by Eggerich in recent weeks.   Currently, we are about half way through it.   Its been a great time of connecting for us and talking in a transparent way to each other. No faces, masks,  or verneers of religiosity as we talk and discuss things heart to heart.

Love and Respect is based off of Gods word in Ephesians.I started earlier in the year doing a section on Ephesians. These posts can be found here—> https://centralityofthegospel.wordpress.com/category/ephesians56/

Eph 5:1  Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children;
Eph 5:2  and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.
Eph 5:3  But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints;
Eph 5:4  and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks.
Eph 5:5  For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
Eph 5:6  Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.
Eph 5:7  Therefore do not be partakers with them;
Eph 5:8  for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light
Eph 5:9  (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth),
Eph 5:10  trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.
Eph 5:11  Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them;
Eph 5:12  for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret.
Eph 5:13  But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light.
Eph 5:14  For this reason it says, “Awake, sleeper, And arise from the dead, And Christ will shine on you.”
Eph 5:15  Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise,
Eph 5:16  making the most of your time, because the days are evil.
Eph 5:17  So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
Eph 5:18  And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit,
Eph 5:19  speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord;
Eph 5:20  always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father;
Eph 5:21  and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.
Eph 5:22  Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.
Eph 5:23  For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body.
Eph 5:24  But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.
Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,
Eph 5:26  so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,
Eph 5:27  that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.
Eph 5:28  So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself;
Eph 5:29  for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church,
Eph 5:30  because we are members of His body.
Eph 5:31  FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND SHALL BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH.
Eph 5:32  This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.
Eph 5:33  Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband.

Verse 31 discusses a one-flesh union and intimacy between a husband and wife  and then calls this a mysterious parallel between Christ and his bride …. the Church.  Do you believe your marriage and sex with your wife should be as beautiful as Christ and His gospel is to the Church…. well, you should.

Paul uses the word “mystery” quite often to refer to Christ and the Gospel and how it works in people to change them.  For additional  references on the word mystery see Rom 11:25, Rom 16:25, Eph 1:9, Eph 3:3-4, Eph 6:19, Col 2:2

The one-flesh union should be a continuous re-enactment of the Gospel to each other in marriage…. a parallel between what Christ did for the Church.  The parallel with Christ is  not one of POWER  OVER as a leader, but rather, one of power under.  One that influences by touching the heart and not just one of showing shiny external signs of morality and pharasaism.  Rather, it is a relationship  where , because of what Christ did for us, we can with a changed heart start to have behavior and obedience which  now just naturally matches the heart.

The one-flesh union between a husband and wife and its a mysterious parallel of what Christ did for his bride, the church, is beautiful.

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